George Yantz, American hero.

Ever hear of George Yantz? Born in Louisville, Kentucky, George was a professional baseball player who appeared in only one major league game.* He is one of thousands of ball players who made it to the majors for a “cup of coffee,” a very brief stint that sometime only lasted a single at bat. Of the 18,000 or so players (and counting) who’ve run up the dugout steps and onto a Major League field, 974 have had one-game careers.

Some might say it’s a tragedy that the fates allowed George only the briefest of glimpses before he was sent packing. And yet, how many of us would give half their 401Ks to be able to say we had been a major leaguer at one point in our lives?

So even if you’re like George and have the shortest of stints at the top, and are then summarily replaced by someone younger, smarter, and more nimble than you, take pride in that one gulp of pure oxygen. You might just appreciate the experience more than Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron and Pete Rose combined.   Plus people will continue to buy you coffee (or something stronger) just to hear you recount the one time you stood at the plate facing high heat.

*George was able to say he hit an astounding 1.000 for his career, going 1 for 1 with a single on the one day he played. September 30, 1912. You could look it up.